How to use your room and radiator thermostats efficiently

Using Your Thermostat

Thermostats allow you to set the temperature of a room or your entire house to an exact heat level. They are incredibly useful for checking, maintaining and providing the right amount of heat for any given area in your home but how do you know whether you’re getting the most out of them?

Simply by having a digital thermostat and thermostatic radiator valves (TRVs), you are already making your home more energy and heat efficient, the control of temperature they give you  ensuring you do not use excess energy to heat your home. However, there are ways to make even these energy saving devices more efficient.

  • Try setting a timer for your heating: Most modern thermostats should allow you to set a timer for when you want the heating on in your home. In fact many modern thermostatic valves also have a device for doing this for particular rooms.

This means that you are only using your house’s radiators when you actually need them rather than all times of the day and when you’re not in the house. The best way to do this is to set the timer 15-30 minutes before you need the heating allowing the house/ room to warm up to the temperature you want.

  • Turn the heating off when you’re not using it: It may seem obvious but you would be surprised at how many people simply forget or cannot be bothered to turn off their central heating when it’s not needed. Even if your turn the heating off 30 minutes before going out of leaving a room , the heat produced beforehand will still keep the room warm.

However, if you just want to turn a particular room’s heating off at the radiator’s thermostatic valve, don’t turn it entirely off as it is actually more efficient to have the radiator on its lowest setting rather than turning it off if other radiators are running in your house still.

  • Take a look at your boiler: Sometimes the best way to make your heating system more efficient is simply to target its source. Most normal boilers will have a water tank with a thermostat attached to it. Set this to between 55°C and 60°C and you can then adjust this higher or lower depending on the time of year and the climate. Another thing to keep in mind is the age of your boiler as the older it is the less efficient it will be.

NOTE – if your water tank does not have a thermostat attached to it, do not alter the temperature and instead seek a plumber’s advice.

  •  Setting your thermostat: Aside from setting timers for when you need your radiators on, there are also a couple of other ways to use your thermostat efficiently. Firstly aim to set the thermostat between 18°C and 21°C. If you have multiple thermostats (known as room thermostats) then alter this to between 10°C and 15°C when you’re not using the room. Also try turning your thermostat down 1°C, something that can save up to 10% on your heating bills throughout the year.